Are you a natural with all things numbers and numeracy? Do you need to brush up on your bookkeeping skills for your small business? Or, do you want to harness a skill highly-valued by employers? A nationally recognised bookkeeping course can help you achieve all of these and more
Bookkeeping skills are highly valued in any industry. All businesses, large and small, need at least a basic understanding of these critical financial systems and responsibilities, such as:
- Accounting systems
- Financial reporting
Bookkeeping courses provided by RTOs are available through TAFEs and universities around Australia. They can also be undertaken with a private provider. Many of the certificates and diplomas are available both full-time and part-time. Many also offer self-paced study so you can balance your study with your other commitments. Let’s take a look at the bookkeeping industry and the courses available.
What are bookkeepers?
Bookkeepers are vital to day-to-day financial business operations. You’ll be required to maintain accurate records of financial transactions that will assist management to make business decisions.
Some of the duties of a bookkeeper include:
- Processing purchases and sales
- Processing payroll via payroll systems
- Using computerised accounting systems and cloud computing
- Record keeping
- Creating finance reports such business activity statements, instalment activity statements, interim reports and operational budgets
- Providing information for Business Activity Statement (BAS) preparation.
A successful completion of a bookkeeping course will provide you with the skills and knowledge required to perform such tasks.
Bookkeeping career outcomes
A career in bookkeeping is a viable option for returning mature-aged workers or people looking to get a foot in the financial-industry door. While most people become BAS agents or bookkeepers, completing a bookkeeping course can lead to numerous career outcomes.
If you wish to take on further training, there’s also opportunity to progress into a career as an accountant.
What is the job outlook for bookkeeping professionals?
The outlook for bookkeepers in Australia is mixed. There will be a great deal of positions becoming vacant in the short term, but the total number of positions are projected to decline by approximately 2% by 2024. Almost a quarter of all bookkeeping positions are in the Professional, Scientific and Technical Services Industry, while another 20% are in the Construction industry.
A role in bookkeeping is very flexible. Both full-time and part-time opportunities are available, as well as the opportunity to work as a sole trader.
Career flexibility is another benefit to a career in bookkeeping. Most workers enter the profession from their late twenties at the earliest, suggesting bookkeeping is a good choice for people looking to re-enter the workforce or change careers.
- 25,000-50,000 job openings between 2013-2018, however the total number of jobs is expected to drop by approximately 2,000 positions.
- Only 33% of bookkeepers work full-time
- Average full-time Salary: $64, 160 per year
What are the different types of bookkeeping courses?
From short courses to Certificate IVs to a Diploma of Accounting, there is a large range of bookkeeping courses available to you. Depending on your career goal, you can choose a qualification that will see you become a qualified bookkeeper upon completion, or you can choose a short course that focuses on a specific area of financial services.
By far the most common course people study to enter the bookkeeping profession is the Certificate IV in Bookkeeping. This course will give you the required skills to become a competent bookkeeper, with the chance to continue with further study to move into accounting or financial planning.
Bookkeeping short courses
There are a number of different bookkeeping short courses. For example, short courses on software programs like MYOB, XERO and Quicken. These courses are a great way to learn the basics of the most common accounting systems.
A Certificate I in Financial Services is a great place to start for those who want a gradual exposure to bookkeeping. There are no entry requirements and upon completion you’ll be able to develop and use a personal budget and savings plan, while understanding debt and consumer credit, superannuation, the Australian financial system and markets, and the taxation system. Once completed you will be qualified to work as an insurance investigator, bookkeeper or credit officer.
A Certificate III in Financial Services is a more comprehensive course structure that includes additional elective units for breadth. Once completed you’ll be qualified for roles as an insurance investigator, bookkeeper or credit officer.
A Certificate III in Accounts Administration, in comparison, is a step towards a career in accountancy and bookkeeping. Once qualified, you will be able to fulfil positions such as Accounts clerk (receivable and payable), payroll clerk, and in customer service in the financial services industry.
To enrol in the Certificate IV in Bookkeeping course, you must have your School Certificate, or completed a Certificate III in Accounts Administration, or relevant recognition of prior learning.
This nationally recognised qualification is ideal for current or prospective bookkeepers and BAS agents, and includes competencies required for BAS agents as specified by the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB). On completion of this course you will be able to set up and maintain computerised accounting systems, prepare financial statements and carry out payroll procedures. Graduates of this qualification have the eligibility to to work as a bookkeeper for a small business, either on staff or contracted, or as a BAS agent.
Following a Certificate IV in Bookkeeping course, you can pursue a diploma or bachelor degree qualification in accounting or financial planning.
Is a bookkeeping course right for you?
The type of course you choose to pursue will depend on what type of bookkeeping role you’re after. For those looking to make a career out of bookkeeping or accountancy, a more comprehensive course is required. However, for small business owners, a short course may be sufficient to fulfil your financial needs.
Most bookkeeping courses are delivered via online learning. Online courses allow for self-paced learning, giving you more flexibility as the student. Furthermore, most providers offer payment plans for all course fees to account for a wide array of financial circumstances.
Enquire about a bookkeeping course today to receive more information about enrolling in a bookkeeping course, and take the next step towards your bookkeeping career today!